Information for our Wish-A-Fish Captains
First, "thank you"
for considering volunteering your time and your boat to help us take the kids and their families out fishing.
You are not only sharing your boat and your knowledge of fishing, but you are also sharing the experience of being on the water
with special needs children and their families - many of whom have never been fishing or boating before.
Without your generosity and participation, the event would not be possible. Experiencing the families’ excitement and smiles first hand is
a very rewarding experience for everyone. But, be warned.... once you get involved, you'll want to do it again every year - it's that much fun !
The safety of the Captains, crews, and our
Wish-A-Fish families is a top priority to all of us. With that in
mind, we require that all boats be at least 22’ in length
. Many of our
Wish-A-Fish families have never been fishing or been aboard the types of
boats we fish in. Many of the kids have balance or coordination issues
due to their health or disability. So, boats with deeper cockpits are
preferred for everyone’s safety. Boats should be able to accommodate 3
guests or more plus the captain and mate. If you have a question on the
suitability of your boat, please Contact Us.
All participating boats should, of course, be in sound condition and
meet all Coast Guard requirements. One of our Safety Requirements is
for all boats that participate in the event to have a current U.S. Coast
Guard Auxiliary Safety Inspection sticker. This is a FREE service
provided by the Coast Guard Auxiliary. They do not issue tickets or
fines if they find something wrong or missing – in fact, you can usually
fix minor issues while they are there, and still get your sticker. The
Coast Guard Auxiliary and Power Boat Squadrons do these vessel checks to
make sure your boat has all the safety equipment that is required, like
fire extinguishers, life jackets, bilge pumps, horns, up to date flares
and whatever else is required for your size boat.
Check out the Vessel Safety Check Web Site
for more information.
Day of the Event:
Liability Issues: A parent must sign our release form before they are
allowed to come aboard; this is to protect both the Wish-A-Fish
Foundation and you as the individual Captain/Boat Owner.
Tackle: We normally have available SOME live bait (bloodworms, night
crawlers, shrimp, etc) plus top and bottom rigs, and hooks for you to
use. Information on what is provided will be sent out from the event
coordinator in your area.
Boat Slips and Piers: Every location is unique, please check with the local organizer to find out if boat slips or piers are available for boats coming by water.
dock committee will make sure that you have all the appropriate Coast
Guard Safety Gear (Life Jackets, Flares, Horn, First Aid Kit, etc)
aboard your boat before the families are loaded. This is to make sure
that we, as responsible boaters, have done everything we can to ensure a
safe and fun trip for everyone. Due to generous donations children’s
life jackets have been provided for the day, but please give your
families a full safety briefing and demonstrate the proper fitting and
use of life jackets before leaving the dock.
Every Captain should plan on having on their
- Enough Fishing Rods for their entire WAF family
- Extra Terminal
- Extra Bait (your choice)
- Ice for you cooler
Keeping fish or practicing “Catch and Release”:
The only requirements
are to follow the DNR regulations. Please let the family know that if
they are going to eat the fish, then, keep whatever they will eat and is
allowed by law. If they don’t plan to eat the fish, please encourage
them to release the fish to protect the resource. If they want to keep
their fish they’ve been told they’ll need to provide a way to take them
home (cooler, plastic bag, etc.) The Captain and Mate
normally clean and pack the fish for the family!
Let’s hope for clear skies
and light winds! If the weather looks questionable for the Wish-A-Fish
event, the final decision will be made the day before. If we do decide
to postpone (note: Posted rain-out dates) everyone will be notified to
the best of our abilities by the TidalFish message boards, emails or
phone calls. (If the captain is unsure of whether to come or not, please
call the local event organizer for the final decision)